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Posted by Megan on December 14, 1999 at 21:07:36:

In Reply to: Partial Seizures and Depression posted by Rebecca Davis on November 10, 1999 at 01:56:40:

: I was diagosed with depression before beign diagnosed with a seizure disorder. I had a grand mal seizure while taking welbutrin. My EEG was abnormal in temporal lobes bilaterally showing spikes and waves. I have since had a couple of what is now called partial seizures. (these have occured since I was a teenager but have been undiagnosed). I would like to have data on the correlation between epilepsy and depression. It would make sense that both can cause imbalances in the brain. If ECC treats depression can organically causes seizures cause depression?

Psuedoseizures (or psychogenic seizures) are quite common and can occur in people who have, or do not have, Epilepsy. The attacks are triggered by a conscious or unconscious desire for more care and attention. The seizures start with rapid breathing, triggered by mental stress, anxiety, or pain. As the person breaths rapidly, they build up carbon dioxide in their body and change their chemistry. This can cause symptoms very much like Epileptic seizures: prickling in the face, hands, and feet, stiffening, trembling, etc. The appropriate treatment for pseudoseizures is to calm the person and start them breathing at a normal rate. Treatment should also involve investigating the mental and emotional factors that led to the psuedoseizure.
How do you distinguish epileptic seizures from pseudoseizures?
Epileptic seizures and pseudoseizures are distinguishable both by their nature and symptoms, but the diagnosis can be difficult. Epileptic seizures are caused by a change in how the brain cells send electrical signals to each other, while pseudoseizures are triggered by a conscious or unconscious desire for more care and attention. Thus, measuring brain activity with an EEG and video telmetry is important for distinguishing epileptic and pseudoseizures. Also, pseudoseizures often lack the exhaustion, confusion, and nausea that is associated with epileptic seizures. Psychogenic seizures can occur in people who also experience epileptic seizures.

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